An Author You Can’t Refuse

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List of Awards

2016 (See Bob, I updated the site, again!)

  • Los Angeles County Office of Education Digital Voice Awards (LACOE DVA)

  • LAUSD KLCS Video in the Classroom (VIC) Award in the Documentary Category

for the video: “C U L8R, All U H8Rs” (C U L8R, All U H8Rs YouTube link)

Making Movies That Matter

  • Making Movies that Matter Is A Youth Short Film Festival which connects mentors and students from Elementary to College within the San Fernando Valley in order to create short films. With guidance and support from mentors, it is their hope that participating students will be inspired to choose subject matter that is personal, heartfelt and meaningful to them which will ultimately manifest itself in quality short films everyone will be proud of.It is the goal that this project to create a spark that ignites the passion in their participants that launches them toward a trajectory of finding a purpose and calling bigger than they could have imagined!Read more: http://kiisfm.iheart.com/onair/kiis-cares-54184/community-council-making-movies-that-matter-14601040/#ixzz492CJvzta
  • Mitchell Englander, LA City Council member promoting his program on KIS FM Radio
  • Sunny Brae’s entries
    • Documentary: What Makes Sunny Brae Special?
    • SunnyBrae
    • Narrative: World’s Greatest Talent Show
    • Talent
    • PSA: Anti-Smoking
    • PSA

2015

  • Los Angeles County Office of Education Digital Voice Awards (LACOE DVA)
    • for the video: Breaking Add

  • LAUSD / KLCS Video in the Classroom (VIC) Awards
    • 2015 Focus Award for “STE(A)M Powered Education
    • Math-Elementary

2014

  • KLCS Video in the Classroom Award
    •  category: Best in Writing: “An Author We Couldn’t Refuse: Frank Baum”

2013

  • Los Angeles County Office of Education Digital Voice Awards (LACOE DVA)
  • KLCS Video in the Classroom Award
    •  category: Teacher Created Instructional Video: “The Not-Necessarily-True Story of Mt. Rushmore”

DVA2

2012

  • Los Angeles County Office of Education Digital Voice Awards (LACOE DVA)
    • for the video: “The Boston Tea Party” : 

[vimeo 34705381 w=600 h=409]

Boston: the OTHER Tea Party from No Eye Contact Productions on Vimeo.

Together with his good friend Angela, Brian Pham travels through time to explore history with their own brand of misdeeds. This story is part of a series – all written and directed by Brian Pham.

The Magic School Watch series
written by Brian Pham

1. BOSTON: the OTHER Tea Party
2. There’s No I in IOWA (The Story of the First Caucus)
3. Highlight: The Prequel to Twilight (A time travel to UTAH to the exact night Stephanie Meyers had a dream.)
4. HAWAII Five OH (A time travel to Honolulu on August 4, 1961 to witness the writing of the birth certificate.)
5. Worcestershire in NEW HAMPSHIRE
6. The Rain in MAINE Stays Mainly in the Plain
7. Text Us TEXAS

    • for the video:  “Prepositions”

Vic22011

  • Los Angeles County Office of Education Digital Voice Awards (LACOE DVA)
  • KLCS Video in the Classroom Award
    • category: English Language Development: “Adjectives, The Musical”
    • category: Best Use of Music: “Adjectives, The Musical”

[vimeo 22060730 w=600 h=330]

Adjectives: the Musical from No Eye Contact Productions on Vimeo.

    • category: Video Yearbook: “The Year at Sunny Brae”

The Year at Sunny Brae from No Eye Contact Productions on Vimeo.

2010 PBS2

  • PBS Teachers Innovation Award
  • Los Angeles County Office of Education Digital Voice Awards (LACOE DVA)
    • for the video: Flu’s Clues
  • KLCS Video in the Classroom Award
    • category: English Language Development: “CSI: Sunny Brae”
    • category: Best Use of Music: “The Question of Digestion”
    • category: Health: “The Question of Digestion”

2009

  • KLCS Video in the Classroom Award
    • category: Teacher Created Instructional Video: “The Verb Song”

from: Galatzan’s Gazette (November 5, 2010)

For the past five years, Robert Schechter, a special education resource teacher at Sunny Brae Elementary, has run an afterschool  program called “An Author You Can’t Refuse”.  According to Schechter, who had a “first” career as a writer for television, each year dozens  of students attend the firstfew sessions, but within a few weeks, that number  dwindles to 15 or so, where it remains. “It drops because they find out actual writing is involved,” he said. A writer’s workshop usually connotes some kind of rustic hideaway where published novelists gather to discuss and practice their craft.  And though the 5th-graders – and a few ambitious 4th-graders – in the program at Sunny Brae, a Title 1 school, may have a novel, even the Great American Novel, in their future, for now they gather every Wednesday at the school from 2:30-3:30 to learn how to develop characters on the page, construct a plot, create a story, and, above all, to trust their imaginations.  “It has been eye-opening for me how difficult it is for them to let their minds roam and see what comes of it,” said Schechter.   Along with his teaching partners, Shannon Gordon, Fernando Reyes, and Trini Hernandez, each of whom is on the faculty at Sunny Brae,  Schechter uses familiar figures from popular culture to help understand the structure and nuance of creative writing.  “When we do the lesson about building a character,” he said, by way of example, “we break down ‘Sponge Bob Square Pants.”  Once they have absorbed the basics, said Schechter, each student is given the picture of a different, bizarre animated figure and required to create a fully-developed character out of that image.  Literary fiction is not the only form within which the students hone their writing skills.  The group also writes and produces a four-minute video each year that is grounded in the standards-based curriculum taught in all schools.  One video was about nouns, and appropriately, the next year the subject was verbs.  Four of the productions received Video in Classroom awards from KLCS.  The entire program has been recognized and supported from several quarters, including a $5000 grant from the National Education association (NEA), and a $10,000 grant from Best Buy, both of which went toward the purchase of video and still cameras.  Earlier this year, Schechter was honored with a PBS Teachers Innovation Award, one of only 10 given across the country.  In the spring, students are  expected to submit the first draft of a complete, original story; once the pieces have been edited, reworked, and edited some more, the entire collection  is published in an anthology that is presented to each contributor at the end of  the year. How many great writers can you name who were published authors before they entered sixth grade?

© 2016
No Eye Contact Productions